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Mom Called Out By Fellow Parent For Letting Her Daughter Ride To School On A Pony

Cropped shot of a girl preparing to ride her pony on a farm

“A horse is a horse of course, of course…”

Who didn’t love Mr. Ed?

Apparently, people may have loved him too much.

There are humans, especially children so enamored with horses and ponies that when they see them, they must ride them.

Not everybody gets to have a pony in life.

And that truth can sting a bit.

So what is a parent to do?

Case in point…

Redditor Tall_Entertainer835 wanted to discuss her experience and get some feedback. So naturally, she came to visit the “Am I The A**hole” (AITA) subReddit.

She asked:

“AITA for letting my child ride her pony to school?”

The Original Poster (OP) explained:

“My (36 F[emale]) child (7 F) asked if she could ride her pony to school last week.”

“For context, we have a small paddock attached to our home where we keep 2 horses, one for me and one for my child.”

“Every morning before school my child gets all of her pony chores done before we leave and we normally walk to school which takes around 20 minutes.”

“We live on the outskirts of a fairly populated city where it’s not uncommon to see horses occasionally, but we are by no means in a rural village.”

“I agreed to let my daughter ride her pony to school because I thought it was a harmless fun thing to do, and also it gives the pony some exercise as we had evening plans and wouldn’t be riding that evening.”

“We arrived at the school gates and of course gathered a little bit of a crowd which wasn’t a problem.”

“The pony is very good and lapped up all the pats and strokes from kids.”

“One girl came bounding over from the year above my daughter and started shouting at me saying she wanted to ride.”

“I politely told her that she couldn’t because she doesn’t have a riding hat and she would have to learn on a safer horse.”

“She immediately started hysterically crying and pleading with her mum saying she wanted to ride.”

“Her mum looked at me with disgust and said ‘See this is what happens when you have no self-awareness and bring a f-ing horse to a school’ and stormed off dragging her kid with her.”

“I was a bit taken aback but ignored her, sent my child to school, and walked the pony home.”

“I was talking to my friend this weekend and she said I was in fact the problem and I was blatantly showing off and should have known that this would cause upset and problems.”

“My response is I turn up to the school gates in jodhpurs and boots regularly so everyone probably knows I have horses, is that showing off too?”

“All I wanted to do was let my daughter do something a bit silly and fun.”

“Now I am really overthinking it though and almost feel nervous to do school drop off tomorrow…”

The OP was left to wonder,”

“So am I the a**hole for letting my daughter ride her horse to school?”

Redditors shared their thoughts on this matter and weighed some options to the question AITA:

  • NTA – Not The A**hole
  • YTA – You’re The A**hole
  • NAH – No A**holes Here
  • ESH – Everyone Sucks Here

Many Redditors declared OP was NOT the A**hole.

“NTA. That woman blames other people for her clear lack of parenting skills.”

“She has to manage her child’s expectations.”

“My husband takes our daughter to school on a motorcycle and it draws the same attention without the entitled demanding a ride and rude response.”

“Would you bringing a puppy with you elicit the same responses? I think not- YWNBTA.” ~ Listen_2learn

“The Kardashians made so many people (who had already been in line in the heat) wait while their family rode the tea cup ride at Disney.”

“They showed up, didn’t wait in line, made other people wait, only used 1/3 of the available ride seats, didn’t offer empty teacups to waiting patrons and we glorified them.”

“Literally glorify them.”

“OP was being kind to her horse and her child and this lady and her entitled kid are the d**ks.”

“That mother could have used this opportunity to say, ‘I didn’t know you liked horses child X, let’s look at lessons online tonight and pet this horse nicely right now. It’s safer and blah blah.”

“Instead, she hand-fed him the narrative of it always being someone else’s fault.” ~ spacepirateprincess

“NTA, the other parents need to teach their kids that you can’t always have what other people have.”

“It is a fact of life… (and this is coming from someone who grew up below the poverty line).”

“Are they gonna be mad at another parent for driving an expensive vehicle?”

“If I was the parent, I would just tell my kid, ‘Look at the pretty horsey! But don’t touch it unless they let you, okay.'” ~ wandering_alphabet

“My daughter’s friend’s dad hobby races, and professionally does rebuilds to make cars into race cars.”

“He has more than once picked up the child in his racecar.”

“The other kids love it.”

“Is it a distraction?”

“Yeah a bit, but in a cool exciting way.”

“The guy is an AH but honestly I always thought the racecar at school bit was one of his redeeming actions.” ~ throwaway1975764

“NTA. Done that as well.”

“In neophobe Switzerland.”

“People lost it as well but we were having fun.”

“Ok, I was on a huge 2000-pound cold blood with hooves like big plates, so as long as I was there nobody dared to say anything.”

“Only when I was gone, some mothers freaked out about how ‘dangerous’ this all was.”

“But I didn’t take it seriously.”

“People also lost it when I gave my kids Sushi in a Bento box to Kindergarten and claimed it’s dangerous to eat raw fish, forbade them to eat the sushi, and called me at home what I was thinking.”

“You can’t make everybody happy: You are not Pizza :)” ~ schlicke

“Lol. This reminded me of the time I got a call from my daughter’s afterschool program because I had sent a boiled quail egg as part of her afternoon snack.”

“They were concerned she had picked up a random bird egg from the playground and taken it away from her after she had started peeling it.”

“I said no, it was not a wild bird egg and pointed out that eggs picked up from the outdoors do not boil themselves.”

“People can be so weird about food.” ~ whycantijustlogin

“That is hilarious – I mean, I understand their perspective, but, yeah, the not thinking about the hardboildness was definitely a brain frotz on the teacher’s part.”

“I probably would have had the same brain frotz, if the kid was a kindergartener, since ‘five year old is eating random crap they found on the ground’ would be far more to the front of my brain in that context than ‘people eat eggs other than chicken eggs.'”

“I like to think I would have figured it out when I saw that it was cooked… but I honestly probably wouldn’t.” ~ IanDOsmond

“NTA. Eye-catching, but nothing wrong with that.”

“The horse is part of your life.”

“My dad used to turn up on his motorbike when I was old enough, to give me a ride home from school.”

“Nobody else got picked up on a moped, let alone a 750cc motorcycle.”

“I know he was showing off, and he worked in a factory, so he liked to be in the open air after his shift ended.”

“But it was still dead cool.” ~ MegC18

“NTA… people who feel entitled to get whatever they want will always try to blame you for saying no.”

“I have said to many parents who spoil children by giving them whatever they want that it may make the kid happy but it setting up the adult that child will become for a lot of misery when the world says no.”

“Which it does a LOT if you fail to teach a child they have to work for what they want.”

“Anyway you brought joy to many children that day.”

“Don’t beat yourself up because 1 spoiled rotten kid threw a tantrum… because his momma hasn’t taught him boundaries.” ~ BaroNessWray1

“I think I fall on NAH.”

“Bringing the horse to school was guaranteed to cause a fuss among a bunch of little kids.”

“That doesn’t mean it’s wrong that you did it.”

“I just think that it was a very predictable outcome that at least one kid would get scared, get upset they couldn’t ride it, get in a tizzy etc.”

“And that this could trigger frustration in a parent.”

“So if you were not anticipating that, I would agree with no-self-awareness thing.”

“And obviously, showing up with a whole horse is different from you showing up to jobs and boots.”

“I do think you’re fine to do it, but if/when a child flips out and a parent gets annoyed, you have to roll with that as an outcome of bringing a horse around a bunch of little kids.” ~ Right_Count

“ESH – but mainly you.”

“You were definitely flexing here with your pony.”

“It’s pretty straightforward and disciplinary to tell your child no.”

“It’s not harmful to them to hear that.”

“I think you knew you’d get a crowd at the school and you knew there’d be some jealous kids there.”

“I just can’t believe you’d be that clueless!” ~ therapoootic

OP came back with an update…

“I want to clear some things up. Firstly, I’m based in England.”

“Secondly, the pony never went into school grounds.”

“There is a small patch of grass about 30 meters from the main school gate and we stood there so no child with allergies would have been subject to horse germs if they didn’t deliberately come over to us.”

“This also means that I don’t feel like I should have run it by the school.”

“And lastly, the pony is an ex-riding school pony.”

“It has been surrounded by kids its whole life and used to do kids birthday parties and everything.”

“I know animals are unpredictable but I was 99.999% sure that the pony would be fine and actually just appreciate the fuss of the tiny humans (he absolutely did).

Well, OP, Reddit is with you.

You did something a little different and quirky.

You can’t be responsible for everybody’s hurt feelings.

Keep on riding.